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U.S. Rep. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., speaks Saturday in Grand Forks during the North Dakota Veterans of Foreign Wars midwinter meeting. 

North Dakota U.S. Rep. Kevin Cramer says he won't run for U.S. Senate.

The 56-year-old Republican, who had been widely seen as the GOP's best chance to unseat Democratic Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, announced Thursday that he will seek another House term instead.

Cramer announced his plans during an interview with talk radio host Scott Hennen.

Republican state Sen. Tom Campbell is running, but he lacks Cramer's name recognition and experience.

Cramer was first elected to the House in 2012. He is a former chairman of the North Dakota Republican Party and previously headed the state Public Service Commission.

Cramer mulled a run for U.S. Senate in 2006 against then-incumbent Democrat Kent Conrad. But he backed out, saying national Republican officials were unwilling to commit enough money to the race at the time.

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